Nine years later, just 1 percent of Columbia’s $10 million commitment to affordable housing has been spent
Outside the West Harlem Development Corporation’s office, which sits on 127th Street between Morningside and Amsterdam Avenue, is a parking lot.
The day that Gene Schafer happened to pass by his old business on 646 W. 131st St., a small bulldozer was clearing debris on what used to be the black rubber floors of his fitness center, ARC Athletics....
To those who are involved in the movement criticizing the Manhattanville expansion, this month's public hearings on the potential exercise of eminent domain were a familiar spectacle. The university trots out its people—the few Harlem-rooted administrators affiliated with the project, well-treated commercial tenants, representatives of construction unions, headlined by the stentorian figure of beloved PrezBo. They present the University as Harlem's potential savior, a remover of blight, the redeemer of the promise of what Upper Manhattan could be. Community critics, numerically a far larger group, decry the expansion as a displacement plan that will destroy their neighborhoods and convert their working-class homes into gentrified playgrounds. There is sound and there is fury. The hearing officer sits stoically, moving only to call the next speaker or reprimand the audience when the Dominican grannies get too rowdy....
You won't see him blocking the bulldozers, but surely founding father Alexander Hamilton is rolling in his grave as new proposals put the future of his former residence in question....